Nagpur: Attendance in city schools and junior colleges has jumped by a staggering 61% within a week of reopening. Analysis of data between January 4-12 shows that the state-level trend of rising attendance level is intact even in the New Year.
District education officer Chintaman Vanjari said, “We were always confident about the attendance figures rising because of the safe environment being provided to students on campus. Every school is taking ample precautions and since these students are in Std IX-XII, there is enough maturity among them to follow guidelines.”
He added that the safety factor has been enhanced because of extra space available in school. “Now that Std VIII and below are not coming to school, many classrooms are vacant. This makes Covid distancing possible. Also, there is greater level of supervision because so few children are on campus,” said Vanjari. Schools are also maintaining gap in between classes to avoid rush.
Schools in Nagpur city reopened from January 4, the last ones to do so in entire Vidarbha. While regular classes are going on, the ‘new normal’ has posed some challenges as well.
Dilip Bose, principal of Sangam Madhyamik Vidyalaya, said, “Teachers have to learn the art of teaching with their masks on. They are also getting used to it. Some teachers have medical issues that may cause a feeling of breathlessness, in which case it’s a different thing, but other than that it’s not a big problem.”
Practicals for Std XII students are also being conducted under the new normal. Kshama Yadav, teacher at Centre Point School (Katol Road), said, “Every student now has to be debriefed about the experiment individually. Earlier I would perform the practicals in the Chemistry lab while students would gather around and watch it, before doing it on their own.”
Despite the new challenges, students seem to adapting fast.
Ashok Gavhankar, general secretary of Vidarbha Junior College Teachers Association, said, “Teenagers are more resilient and can adapt to new situations with greater speed. So they will continue to enjoy the classroom atmosphere even with multiple restrictions in place.”